IELTS Listening Tips: How to Get a High Score

Learn the Best IELTS Listening Techniques & Format to Score High

PI - Prepare IELTS


ielts listening tips


The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is a widely recognised English proficiency test that examines four key areas: Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking of English language. In this blog, we will focus on one of the crucial components of the IELTS test - the IELTS Listening section. We will shed light on the IELTS Listening tips and tricks that can help you achieve high band scores in the IELTS Listening test.

IELTS Listening Test Format

Before discussing the techniques, let us first understand the format of the IELTS Listening test. The Listening module consists of four sections, each with ten questions, a total of 40 questions. Here's a breakdown:


  • Section 1: A conversation between two people in a social context (e.g., booking a hotel room).

  • Section 2: A monologue in a social context (e.g., importance of education).

  • Section 3: A conversation between two or more people in an academic context (e.g., a discussion between students and a professor).

  • Section 4: A monologue on an academic topic (e.g., a university lecture: role of digital marketing).


Each section is played only once, and you have to answer the questions as you listen. There is no extra time to transfer your answers, so accuracy and focus are crucial.

Tips to Score Well in Your IELTS Listening Section

Now, here are some IELTS Listening tips and tricks to score well.


  • The most important IELTS listening tips is that make sure to attempt all the questions as the test does not have any negative marking for the wrong answer. 

  • In the IELTS Listening test, spelling matters. Be careful with your spelling when transferring answers to the answer sheet.

  • Since there is a time limit for each section of IELTS, it is better not to waste time on just one question. If you do not know the answer, just move on and do not spend too much time on those questions. 

  • It is essential to practice listening to various accents to become comfortable with different pronunciations.

  • Remember that the answers appear in the order they are heard in the audio. So, plan your answers accordingly. 

  • Answers may not be worded exactly as they appear in the questions. Therefore, be prepared to recognise synonyms or paraphrased versions of the information you're looking for.

  • For multiple-choice answers, a letter (a, b, c, or d) will be required. So avoid writing the whole answer; you just have to mention the letter.

  • Sometimes, the speaker might trick you with the potential answer, which is not the actual answer. Generally, it happens in the third part of the IELTS listening test when you hear a conversation between two people. So, to avoid anticipating wrong answers, carefully listen to the full conversation first. 

  • After each section, quickly review your answers to ensure they make sense in the context of the questions and the audio you heard.

  • Another important IELTS listening tips is to maintain a word limit. Make sure that you do not exceed the word limit. 

  • Remember that hyphenated words (short-term) are considered one. So, write an answer accordingly. 

  • Last but the most important tip is to stay calm and maintain focus. It's easy to get flustered during the test if you miss an answer; thus, stay calm and focus on the next question. You can always return to the ones you missed later if time allows.

  • Sometimes, your initial prediction may not be entirely accurate. Be open to adjusting your answer as you gather more information from the audio.

Quick Tips to Predict Answers in IELTS Listening Exam

Predicting answers quickly in the exam is a valuable IELTS listening tips that can save time and improve your accuracy. Here are some tips to help you become more adept at predicting answers.


  • Before listening to a section, quickly skim through the questions to get an idea of what information you need to listen for. 

  • Based on the question prompts, anticipate what kind of information you expect to hear. For example, if a question asks for a date, be ready to listen for numbers and dates in the audio.

  • While listening, jot down key points, names, numbers, and keywords. Tune your ears to pick up on these elements, as they are likely to be the answers you're looking for.

  • Listen for words that indicate transitions or important information, such as "however," "in addition," or "finally." These can help you identify the structure of the conversation or lecture.

  • Often, the speaker will provide clues or signposts that indicate where the answer can be found. Listen for words like "firstly," "secondly," "in conclusion," or "on the other hand", as they can guide you to the relevant information.


Scoring high band scores in the IELTS Listening test requires a combination of practice, strategy, and effective time management. By following the techniques explained in the blog and becoming familiar with the test format, you can boost your confidence and improve your chances of achieving your desired IELTS band score.

So, if you are also ready to appear for computer-based IELTS, then we recommend you sign up for our IELTS Courses designed by our experts. If you need further guidance, please contact Prepare IELTS (PI) expert counsellors. Our team of education experts is dedicated to assisting you in the best possible way for the IELTS exam. You can also get a one-on-one counselling session online via our platform. Contact us at or call us at +91 9773398388


The IELTS Listening test consists of four sections, each with ten questions. The sections vary in difficulty and include conversations, monologues, and academic discussions. Test-takers listen to audio recordings and answer questions based on what they he

Effective note-taking involves jotting down keywords, numbers, and key information. Use abbreviations and symbols to save time. Your notes should help you recall essential details when answering questions.

The IELTS Listening test takes approximately 30 minutes, including the time to listen to the recordings and answer the questions. There's an additional 10 minutes at the end to transfer your answers to the answer sheet.

No, each section of the IELTS Listening test is played only once. Therefore, it's essential to focus and listen attentively the first time.

If you miss an answer, don't dwell on it. Stay calm, focus on the next question, and return to it later if time allows. It's better to answer the remaining questions accurately.


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